Thursday, 11 March 2010

Editing = Different Time Management

Since I started serious editing, I have felt noticeable difference in the amount of time I have to do everything - or at least a few different things - I want to do every evening. It's crazy, how much time it takes, compare to writing.

When you only have 3 or 4 hours free in the evening, it's hardly enough time to go through list of 4 or 5 to-dos, and not to mention that I would actually like to have some free time, watch TV, faff around on the Internet, read books etc. So with the editing eating away my time, I had to look very hard at how I spend my evenings.

A lot of things which I took for granted as my daily activities - namely, A LOT of time online - had to be cut down severely. Facebook, Twitter, Blogs - they all get far less time now. Before, just reading blogs would take me about 2 hours because there are so many of them that I like to read. Now I focus on a few every evening, and if I get a chance to visit some more during the day, I do that. Facebook and Twitter are not much of a sacrifice, because I am not particularly addicted to them.

I have also had to watch a little less TV. Generally, I have TV on in the background regardless of what I am doing, because I can do almost anything while watching TV, including writing, except on occasions when I just mute it while I need some silence. I still watch TV while editing, but for more focused, detailed editing, I find it distracts me, so it has to be turned off. I have taken to listening to Beethoven instead, which works as a good background noise too.

But I refuse to let my evenings become all about editing as well, as there are other things I want to do - focus on my journaling for example, and some things I have to do - like workout or cook dinner (unless I order take away ;) so I have learnt that if I spend less time online, I can spend bit more time on other things, and edit, maintain at least some sort of balance.

There is no perfect balance of course - it is a constant battle against procrastination and against desire to go for "fun" goals. But it is a battle that though I don't think I am winning yet, I am definitely not losing.

My motto: get ready my warriors, because we are going to beat the crap out of all the opposition, and succeed.


  1. Yes! This is exactly what I've found too - editing takes far more time than the actual writing process. It just requires such a different thought process...odd, isn't it? Hence my forced re-prioritizing this week.

    Good luck with your balancing act - we'll figure this out yet! :-)

  2. I think we all need to become jugglers. :-)

    I'm slowly learning to manage my time better so I can get some writing and editing done in the evenings.

    So far I've been able to avoid computer games, but the reading still tempts me beyond my ability to resist.;-)

  3. Jamie,

    I also find that because editing is so slow and requires so much attention to detail, I can't do it for as long as I can write. I have written 10K in a day, but I can't edit 10K in a day, because that would either give me a headache, or make me want to go to sleep and forget everything. Still working on that, so I can make weekend editing more productive.

    C R,
    I still have to figure out how I am going to fit the writing in. Don't even have enough time for editing + some relaxed time to do other stuff.

    I don't read much at home - except if I am so into a story, I can't wait. But now generally I keep reading for commute, and breaks at work.

  4. I think this is good, learning to become more productive while retaining a balance. If it becomes all about editing, there's the danger of resentment taking hold.

  5. Angela,

    You are completely right, though on the other hand I just have to make sure editing doesn't lose its priority either. *sigh* it's a tough balance.

  6. I love editing. However what I really want to discuss is balance in life. If you find that illusive sucker please send me an email immediately. I want to borrow it.

  7. Still working on it Tina :-) But will be sure to give you a buzz when I find it.

  8. It took me 2 months to write my book and now going into 5 months of edits. Geesh.

  9. Terry,

    I feel your pain. I wrote this book for NaNo 2009, and no doubt the editing will go on and on and on ...